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Protecting Georgia Children Through our Child Passenger Safety Program

January 03, 2018

Protecting Georgia Children Through the Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law, Child Passenger Safety Program

Our nation’s children are our greatest asset.  In essence, they are our future.  We, as parents and adults, share a societal responsibility to help ensure all children stay safe.  Keeping children safe on the roadway is a vital part of this mission.  However, Car accidents are the leading cause of death for children between the ages of one and 12 years old.  Each year, approximately 600 children under the age of 13 are killed in motor vehicle accidents.  One-third of these young accident victims were killed as a direct result of improper use of childhood safety restraints, including car seats, booster seats, or safety belts.  Study after study demonstrates that the use of proper safety restraints reduces the risk of death in infants by over 71% and in children by up to 59%.

Georgia Child Passenger Safety Laws 

Keeping your child safe in the car begins with ensuring your compliance with Georgia’s car seat and booster seat laws. 

Birth- 12 Months:  All infants must be secured in an approved car seat while riding in any passenger automobile, van, or pickup truck.  The Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety and several national guidelines call for all children under the age of one to ride in a rear-facing car seat in the back seat of the vehicle. 

Ages 1-3:  It is now widely recommended that your child remain in a car seat facing the rear of the seat for as long as possible.  This is the best way to keep your child safe in the event of an accident.  Your child should remain rear-facing until he or she exceeds the weight or height limits set by your car seat’s manufacturer.  Once your child outgrows his or her rear-facing car seat, your he/she is ready to travel in a forward-facing car seat with a harness.

Ages 4-7:  Your child should remain in a forward-facing car seat with a harness until he or she reaches the maximum height or weight limit set by the car seat’s manufacturer.  Once your child outgrows the forward-facing car seat, it is time to travel in a booster seat, still in the backseat.

Ages 8-12:  All children eight years and younger are required to use an approved booster seat.  To ensure your child’s safety, you should keep your child in a booster seat until he or she is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly.  For your child to be ready to move from a booster seat to a seat belt, the lap belt must lie securely against the upper thighs.  Moreover, it should not touch the child’s stomach.  The shoulder belt must fit snugly across the chest and shoulder, and not across the neck or face.  Remember that all children should remain riding in the back seat because this is the safest position for them.

Saving Lives with Booster Seats 

While most parents are aware of the need to use car seats when their children are very young, many overlook the importance of booster seats.  The story of young Madison Harty highlights the critical importance of this life-saving device.  Atlanta teenager Madison would not be alive today if it was not for her booster seat.  Madison Harty was just five years old when she and her parents were in a serious car accident.  Doctors, police, and emergency workers credit the $20 booster seat that Madison was riding in as saving her young life.  Today, Madison and her mother Jenny Harty have become tireless crusaders for increased child passenger safety measures. 

Installing Seats Correctly

Selecting the appropriate child restraints for your child is the first step to ensuring their safety; proper installation is the next.  Before installing any car or booster seat, you should always read the instructions.  Each seat will have slightly different installation directions.  The following are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Seat location:  No matter what type of child restraint system you select, it should always be used in the back seat of the vehicle.  No child under the age of 13 should be allowed in the front seat.
  • Securing the seat:  When the car or booster seat is properly installed, there should be no front-to-back or side-to-side movement of more than one inch.
  • Fitting your children in the seat:  Once the seat is properly installed, it is important to make sure your child is fitted into the seat correctly.  Harness straps must lie flat.  In rear-facing seats, the straps should go through the back slot at or below the child’s shoulders.  In front-facing seat, the straps should be placed through the slots at or above the child’s shoulders.  The chest clip should be at armpit level and the harness snug.

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Montlick & Associates: Dedicated to Keeping Children Across Georgia Safe

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident caused by someone else's negligence, contact Montlick & Associates today for your free consultation with our experienced Car Accident Lawyers in Georgia. Montlick & Associates has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over 37 years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.

No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
17 Executive Park Dr NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (800) LAW-NEED
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333 

Category: Personal Injury

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.